CANTERBURY halfback Trent Hodkinson has made the stunning admission that a newspaper story may be responsible for the collapse of his goal-kicking form.
Hodkinson was kicked at 94.9 per cent in the lead-up to the round 17 encounter with Newcastle in Mackay – and has since (until round 18) landed just 4 from 12, a percentage of just 33.3.
He tells Rugby League Week a story in Sydney’s Daily Telegraph before the Knights clash resulted in him “over-thinking” his routine, with the Dogs calling in goal-kicking coach Daryl Halligan to help him.
“It’s definitely a mental thing – I’m probably over-thinking it a bit,” Hodkinson says in the wake of the 39-0 win over Melbourne, in which he kicked four from nine.
“It gave me the mock when the article came out in the paper and ever since then….I’ll have to get over it and do some practice.
“I would have loved to have stayed under the radar but these things happen and hopefully I can get a few over in the next game.
“We’ve got the bye now so there’s plenty of time to do practice. (Halligan) will do the technique with me, the mental side is up to me and how I’m feeling at the time.”
Hodkinson agreed that praise can help a player in general play, but distract him from specific tasks like goal-kicking.
“I’m a bit frustrated with my goal kicks – it does put a dampener on your game,” he said.
“But I try to separate it. That can be on its own. I didn’t let it affect my game (against Melbourne) but I would have liked to have a few more go over, that’s for sure.”
Filed for: RUGBY LEAGUE WEEK